Principal Proposed Uses
Other Proposed Uses
- Kidney Stones
The familiar Halloween pumpkin is a member of the squash family, native to North and Central America. The seeds of the pumpkin were used medicinally in Native American medicine, primarily for the treatment of kidney, bladder, and digestive problems. From 1863 to 1936, the United States Pharmacopoeia listed pumpkin seeds as a treatment for intestinal parasites.
What Is Pumpkin Seed Used for Today?
These studies did suggest benefit with the combination product, but since saw palmetto is thought to be effective for BPH, it is not clear whether pumpkin seed oil made any additional contribution.
These studies, however, can only be regarded as highly preliminary investigations of a traditional use; they were not designed in such a way that they could prove effectiveness.
In studies, the dose of pumpkin seed oil used for the treatment of BPH was 160 mg three times daily. For the prevention of kidney stones, the dose of pumpkin seed snack tried was 5–10 grams per day.
As a widely eaten food, pumpkin seeds are presumed to be safe (though there have been cases in which incompletely chewed up seeds have gotten stuck in the esophagus!). There are as yet no known or suspected safety risks with pumpkin seed oil.
- Reviewer: EBSCO CAM Review Board
- Review Date: 07/2012 -
- Update Date: 07/25/2012 -